There is so much about wine when it comes to parties, everyone have their own preference about how to get the party going down with that glass of the ‘super drink’. But there are some things which are quite constant that you should consider the next time you are throwing up a party and wine is an in thing. These can help you make a great party if you take wine inclusion quite seriously.
Run the Numbers on How Much Wine You’ll Need
You should figure on three drinks per person, give or take, over the course of an evening. Keep in mind that there are four good-size glasses of wine in a 750-milliliter bottle. Do the math from there. And remember the golden rule of partying: Never run out of wine. Buy more than you need.
Keep It Glassy
Stylish stemware like Crate & Barrel’s Tour white wineglass (above, $12) works for small dinners. But when you’re pouring for an army, opt for durable, long-stemmed glasses that cost less and look great.
Case the Joint
Purchasing wine by the case is a pro move: You know you’ve always got a wine you love on hand. Let me make the case for Italian Barbera as your “house wine.” It’s loaded with fruit, brightened with ample acid, and nearly devoid of tannin, meaning it’s tasty, food-friendly, and (usually) inexpensive.
End on a High Note
As in show business, you want to leave them wanting more. Rather than have their last memory of dinner be of some lukewarm red in their fingerprinted glass, trot out heady, sweet nectar for dessert. This Isole e Olena Vin Santo del Chianti Classico ($50/half-bottle) will send everyone home raving.
A glass of wine is a great treat for many people, a way of making good times even better. Some take red, others white, others go with the glass on the table, no matter the type. But do you really know the difference between the whites and the reds? Here are some of their distinctions.
Both red wine and white wine can be either dry or sweet, or anywhere in between. But in general, reds are more robust and more complex than white wines. White wines tend to be lighter, without the complexity of reds. This basic difference has more to do with how the wines are fermented than it does with the grapes. Although red wines are generally made with red and black grapes, and white wines are usually made from green grapes, this isn't always the case.
The main difference between red and white wines is the fermentation process. When making white wine, the stems, seeds, and grape skins are removed from the grape juice after pressing. With red wines, the grape stems, seeds, and skins are left in the juice. Because of this, tannins and pigments will leach out of the stems, seeds, and skins into the grape juice. It's these tannins that produce the complexity of red wines.
Tannins are compounds present in grapes and other plants. Tea also contains tannins... if you've ever drank a strong cup of tea, the bitter, astringent taste is caused by these tannins. In wine, these tannins act to prevent oxidation of the wine while it ages. This is important in red wines, since reds are generally aged and matured for a longer period of time than white wines. The tannins present in red wine also provide another layer of flavor, increasing the complexity of the wine, and making it more robust. The astringency of the tannins will diminish and mellow as the wine ages.
Wine usually features in a dinner table, a glass or so to go with the dinner meal, and it makes difference. But sometimes children happen to be at the dinner table, and wine is still around. So, is it safe to serve kids a glass of wine, or let them have their share of the treat? Well, this can be quite dangerous in a way; you may need to think about it for a while.
The first and most serious health risk for children who drink alcohol at a young age is that it will lead to more serious drinking in the future. There has been a growing feeling among parents that giving their kids a little bit of alcohol, maybe a diluted glass of wine or something, will introduce them to drinking responsibly and make them less likely to drink in the future. If you really believe that, does that mean you’re going to let them have a little sex, take a few drugs, and maybe do a little armed violence at a young age, too, to prevent them from doing it later?
Research shows, of course, that the opposite is true. According to research quoted in an article from British newspaper The Telegraph, people who drink at a young age are even more likely to become heavy drinkers when they are older.
The physical health dangers of alcohol are serious, too. Studies have shown that the consumption of alcohol can contribute to depression, subtle brain damage, mental health problems, long-term memory problems, liver damage, and reduced growth hormone levels. To be fair, many of these studies are based on the idea that Junior is pounding down a 40-ounce bottle of malt liquor every day, but even lighter alcohol consumption is bound to have some sort of cumulative effect.